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19April2019

Intimacy4us

Do you need a mentor? Part 1

You and your wife are not seeing eye-to-eye lately. You don’t feel that it’s so serious that you have to go and see a psychologist and none of your friends want to discuss such a “heavy” topic with you (their wives are anyway all friends with yours). So what do you do? Is a mentor an option?

“In the Greek mythology Mentor was one of Odysseus’ most trusted advisors. Mentor was appointed by Odysseus to raise his son, Telemachus, while he (Odysseus) was at war in Troy,” says Timothy Kieswetter, a well-known theologist and sexologist.

“It makes me think about what Clarence Budington Kelland wrote: ‘He didn’t tell me how to live; he lived and let me watch him do it’,” explains Timothy. “Our fathers have left us with a mythological mentor to help raise us. Our fathers’ deeds, words, looks, discipline, absence and interaction with our mothers have mentored us.” He explains that not all things are good that our fathers had left us, but before we go and look for another mentor, we must be able to identify the current mentor in our marriage.
“Mentoring can be compared to a computer programme – the mentor is the programmer. By what we saw, how our fathers handled our mothers and other women, our first version of being a man was programmed.”

Timothy explained that a person can do one of two things: follow it or rebel against it. “Not one of these is ideal. It’s important to add new ‘patches’ and to do programme updates. Mentoring is a continuing process, but not possible before you haven’t identified your basic ‘how to be a man programme’.”
What can you do?

Timothy suggests the following:

1.    Take a pen and paper and write all the good points that you learned from your father on one side, and all the bad things on the other side.
2.    Divide it into categories like: respect your wife, communication, role dividing, etc.
3.    Decide what categories you would like to keep, and which of these you would like to get rid of or remove.
4.    Now you will be able to watch other men in their marriages and to approach them for mentoring.

“When you are teachable and open to advice from other people, you can grow quickly with mentoring as a man and person. ‘Accountability’ gives you an anchor and something to strive for. Without this you close yourself off to growth in being a man,” he explains.

•    Read the following Intimacy4Us for part 2 about mentoring.